For Immediate Release
HONOLULU, HAWAII - The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) today pledged $250,000 to help launch a landmark partnership designed to improve the safety of global food supplies. Based on Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) food safety capacity building initiatives, the Global Food Safety Partnership is an innovative public-private partnership focused on improving systems and regulations that lead to better health outcomes, reduced risk of food-borne hazards, expanded participation of farmers and producers into higher value and global food supply chains, and improved food security. With the USAID contribution, the initiative has secured enough pledges to establish a fund to support country-led efforts to produce safe, nutritious foods. The fund, which will be administered by the World Bank, is the first of its kind focused on food safety.
Announced during the APEC meetings in Honolulu, the Global Food Safety Partnership will initially pilot and develop training programs, address high-priority food hazards, and strengthen laboratory capacity in APEC so that it can later be customized, expanded and delivered to Africa and other areas.
The objectives of the partnership are aligned with Feed the Future, the U.S. global hunger and food security initiative. Feed the Future places an emphasis on smallholder farmers, particularly women, to support countries in developing their agriculture sectors as a catalyst to generate broad-based economic growth and reduce hunger and undernutrition. With Feed the Future support, the World Bank-administered Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) has proven successful in supporting country-led approaches to food security and is leveraging significant investments from multilateral institutions toward improved global food security.
USAID's pledge today for the Global Food Safety Partnership will complement investments in GASFP to further advance global food safety and security efforts. The pledge was announced by Nancy Lindborg, Assistant Administrator of USAID's Bureau for Democracy, Conflict, and Humanitarian Assistance.
"The Global Food Safety Partnership is designed to transform food safety, prevent food-borne illness and engage local farmers and producers in innovative safety practices," Lindborg said. "By coordinating and collaborating, we can ensure access to safe, nutrient-dense foods, particularly for women and young children, in the very communities we seek to empower. This objective is at the core of Feed the Future, the U.S. government's global hunger and food security initiative."
Through Feed the Future, the U.S. works with partners to develop new means for reducing agricultural and food safety threats, such as contamination of the food supply. With a focus on building partnerships to leverage substantial private-sector resources, Feed the Future also advances sustainable growth in emerging markets to address the global food security challenge. These efforts promote the expansion of regulatory cooperation and effectiveness, which are high priorities for APEC, and align with the goals of the Global Food Safety Partnership. USAID's commitment announced today, in combination with those of private and public sector partners, will help enable the Global Food Safety Partnership to serve as the premier focal point to maximize the impact of industry and government partners to support food safety for years to come.
Feed the Future, is the U.S. global hunger and food security initiative geared toward addressing the root causes of poverty and undernutrition. For more information, please visit www.feedthefuture.gov.
Last updated: January 22, 2015